Interviews - January 1987 to March 2020

Dick Gratton at All About Jazz

This is Dick's Photo Gallery.

Here are Dick's previous and current engagements.

For a sample of Dick's music, Click Here - (From Dick's first CD "THE GUITARS OF DICK GRATTON")


Solo guitar performances of Latin - TV themes - Ballads - Show Tunes

Dick Gratton - solo guitar live at Cedar Pub - Mercerville NJ - "CON ALMA"

Dick Gratton - solo guitar live at Cedar Pub - Mercerville NJ - "SUICIDE IS PAINLESS"

Dick Gratton - solo guitar live at Cedar Pub - Mercerville NJ - "TENDERLY / SEND IN THE CLOWNS"


DICK GRATTON started playing guitar in 1948 after hearing his father's extensive collection of jazz and big band recordings. Inspired by guitarists Les Paul, Gene Bertoncini, Tony Mottola and Wes Montgomery, Dick started performing in groups in high school and shortly thereafter joined a group in 1957 working New Jersey night clubs in the Trenton area and Atlantic City. Self taught on guitar and bass, Dick has performed with the late great jazz pianist Dick Braytenbah as well as recording artists such as Philadelphia based vocalists Suzanne Cloud, Denise Montana, Miss Justine and Connie Rainis, Trenton area jazz vocalist Wenonah Brooks, saxophonists Denis DiBlasio and Richie Cole and the late great jazz guitarist Tal Farlow. Area night club appearances include the Greenwood Grill, the Mill Hill Saloon, the Tremont Lounge, the Centre House Pub, the Urban Word Cafe, and Marsilio's Restaurant in Trenton NJ, the Nassau Inn in Princeton NJ and the Farnsworth House and Bordentown Yacht Club in Bordentown NJ. Dick has also made concert performances at the Trenton NJ Mill Hill Playhouse, the New Jersey State Museum in Trenton NJ and the Jazz and Blues Showcase Series in Medford Lakes NJ, led jazz groups at annual dinners for the American Federation Of Musicians Of Trenton NJ, performed at many of Trenton's official functions such as annual Trenton Preservation Awards ceremonies and Heritage Days Festivals, played in Bordentown NJ for annual Cranberry Festivals and Iris Festivals and performed in a six piece jazz group with special guest saxophone artist Richie Cole at the 1998 Trenton Jazz Festival at Waterfront Park in Trenton NJ, opening for legendary jazz performers pianists David Benoit and Alex Bugnon, Latin pianist Eddie Palmieri and vocalist Oleta Adams. Dick has played with Tal Farlow in guitar workshops in Philadelphia PA as well as night clubs in Philadelphia PA and the Jersey shore. In addition to his self-produced CD "THE GUITARS OF DICK GRATTON" recorded during the summer of 1998 at his Bordentown NJ studio, Dick is also featured on recordings of vocalist and composer John Calu, jazz vocalists Linda Lee, Wenonah Brooks and the late smooth jazz vocalist Evelyn Anderson. He has played both concert guitar and steel string guitar on engagements.


"This past Saturday I was fortunate enough to share the stage for a brief time with jazz guitarist Dick Gratton. Dick performed with Kevin Toft as I provided percussion support for the two of them. Gratton held the audience practically spellbound with his smooth stylings. Friday nights at 6:00 p.m. Dick Gratton performs live at the Chambers Walk Cafe located on Main St. in Lawrenceville. Take the family out for some tasty treats and enjoy the sounds of this local legend." - Danny Coleman, The Trentonian - Trenton NJ - May 17, 2012

Dick Gratton is playing tonight at Chambers Walk Cafe! Great food and live jazz in a cozy setting -- now that's how to spend a wintery evening! - The Lawrence Voice - (on Facebook) January 7, 2011

"...jazz guitarist Dick Gratton, from Bordentown. I used to play jazz guitar and this was the real deal, and better yet, he took requests, including 'Waltz For Debby' and 'Manha de Carneval', two of my favorite tunes. I was hooked." - Cliff Moore, The Montgomery News - Montgomery Township, NJ - May 2, 2008

"Well known for his articulate melodic compositional interpretations, Mr. Gratton's style is much different from the prevailing atonal qualities of modern jazz guitar." - Josh Appelbaum, The Princeton Packet - Princeton NJ - June 2, 2006

"Gratton: quiet, big hands caressing and coaxing resonating notes. This is warm music. Leave the cold outside, on the streets of Trenton." - Joseph Sapia (from liner notes of the Evelyn Anderson-Dick Gratton CD "YOU REALLY DON'T KNOW ME") - October 28, 2000

"There's a subtlety to Gratton's playing that can best be appreciated in small jazz clubs..." - Richard J. Skelly, US1 - Princeton NJ - August 16, 2000

"One of Trenton's premiere jazz guitarists...a combination of Wes Montgomery, Les Paul and Tony Mottola." - Ed Ramsey, The Trenton Times - Trenton NJ - June 5, 1997

"Sort of in the Tal Farlow mold with his acoustic guitar with his own unique way of doing things. He knows a million tunes and he doesn't sound like all of the other guitarists." - Randy Sutin, The Trenton Times - Trenton NJ - December 18, 1992

"Gratton's style is laid back and articulate, the kind of mainstream jazz that retains a recognizable melody and doesn't challenge the nervous system." - Marci Shatzman, The Trentonian - Trenton NJ - December 25, 1991

"...Definitely one of the guitarists you should try to hear." - Mark Stradling, The Trentonian - Trenton NJ - October 26, 1986

"Dick Gratton gives one the impression that when he entered this world, he had that jazz guitar with him!" - Vic Bodine, The Trentonian - Trenton NJ - March 13, 1971


Hello Dick,

Just a quick blast to let you know just how much we enjoyed your performance last night at the Chambers Walk Cafe. Although Donna and myself are mostly familiar with the jazz style of Russ Freeman and David Benoit, we weren't prepared for last night's experience. Both of us recognized just about every piece that you played, but your arrangements were off the scale - to put it mildly!

Toward the end of the evening, when I stood off to the side watching you spin your magic, the visuals proved to be as interesting as the music. A master at work.

As I proofread this it does appear to be an exercise in accomplished smoke blowing. However, even if you were Hitler incarnate, we'd have to give the devil his due - great is great. Luckily for us, you're a good guy to know. Fifty plus years of experience without the attitude that generally accompanies it.

We'll be seeing more of each other, Dick, as my schedule permits. I'm sure that your working with others should be just as entertaining as your solo performance last night.

Keep it alive my friend

Rich and Donna - (via e-mail) - June 2, 2007

Dear Dick -

My friends and I had dinner at Chambers Walk, and all of us truly enjoyed your beautiful music! You are an amazing talent - you enhance the meaning of the music for the listener in a way that is so rare these days!

Best wishes and continued success to you in these trying musical times (as a vocalist, I can only boast a few meager gigs in 2009! I certainly miss the 80's, and the continuous five gig weekends!).......The next time we dine at Chambers, I will be sure to say hello.

Happy Holidays!

Deborah - (via e-mail) - November 18, 2009

...You can do more with six strings than most piano players can do with two hands.

Linda - jazz vocalist - (via e-mail) - November 30, 2009

Dear Dick -

Adrian and I want to thank you again for the beautiful music you provided at our reception. It was just what we hoped it would be and we had many compliments from our guests about how much they enjoyed it. It was perfect.

Ruth and Adrian - (via US mail) - December 8, 2009


My wife and I heard you for the first time last Friday night at the Chambers Walk Cafe. We had a great time and your music made the night even more special. Upon leaving the cafe I mentioned that I wanted to buy your CD. Please know, however, if I played my guitar just a fraction as good as you, I would ask how much you charge for a lesson.

In closing, my wife and I are looking forward to our next dinner at the Chambers Walk Cafe and hearing you again.


Dean - (via US mail) - December 22, 2009


Thanks for a fine program last evening. It was very enjoyable. The music was a good fit for a Valentine's holiday program, as I hoped. I greatly appreciated the turnout, which was larger than usual. The fact that most who attended remained for both sets, suggested that they also enjoyed the program. Hope you, Linda, Dennis and Dick were pleased with the evening as well.

Thanks again for doing the show and for being part of the series.

Stay well,

Russell - Jazz and Blues Showcase - (via e-mail) - February 13, 2011


Dick, we so enjoyed your playing and Linda's singing. The true art of the guitar accompaniment. Your harmonies were refreshing. Hope to see you and hear you soon.

Darla - vocalist - (via Facebook) - September 3, 2011

Great show at Cedar Gardens last night! Thanks for the lesson.

Kevin - guitarist - (via Facebook) - December 16, 2011

... Dick Gratton a super ... jazz guitarist. Man he played like a well oiled machine he was amazing ... used a vintage hollow body Gibson.

Mike - drummer - (via Facebook) - January 14, 2012

Hey you were great everyone loved listening to you play. You were professional. Even Vince Martell from the Vanilla Fudge band famous from the seventies many hits on the radio gave you many compliments. And Vince being an icon and famous guitarist who travels around the world playing that's saying something. Man you are great guitarist glad to see you play.

Mike - drummer - (via Facebook) - January 15, 2012

When you get a chance... make sure you go see a Dick Gratton solo performance. You will be amazed..

Frank - guitarist - (via Facebook) - April 1, 2012

Stopped in to Cedar Pub tonight on the way home from some of my own band stuff and Dick Gratton was playing. SUCH A PLEASURE TO LISTEN TO AN ARTISAN OF HIS INSTRUMENT. It was like a library in there. So quiet. No one wanted to miss one note. He is one of the area greats, no not area greats, just greats!!! You gotta go hear him play to hear a master of melody chord progression playing. (I don't know what else to call it). It's just nice to hear someone who can just sit down and play the guitar ALONE, with no backup. Pure beautiful guitar playing.. And this is coming from a guy (me) who has been playing guitar for 46 years!!! Nice job Dick!!!

Gary - guitarist/bassist - (via Facebook) - September 14, 2012

Is your brain almost overheating while you play like that? Doesn't seem possible for you to coast through any song on autopilot, since you're handling chords, bass notes and melody. It really is exceptional what you do.

Jeff - bassist - (via e-mail) - January 1, 2013

Tonight (Thursday) the incomparable Dick Gratton is with the fabulous Linda Lee at Cedar Gardens Pub in Hamilton for an evening of smooth jazz and great music. Gratton is second to none and Linda Lee is an amazing talent; together they are near perfection on stage. Stop on out, have a cocktail and hear some fantasticly talented musicians.

Danny Coleman, The Trentonian - Trenton NJ - February 21, 2013

“Misty” - One of my favorite songs too. That was the first time Dick Gratton and I EVER did that tune together. It was totally off the cuff, and we weren't even sure what key to do it in. But Dick Gratton is a master, so no worries. He said, “Just sing, and I'll play around you.”

Bob - vocalist - (on Facebook) - March 3, 2013

Dick, loved everything you played but especially the Pat Metheny. The tunes from "As Falls Wichita" are among one of my all time faves. Can you tell me which Metheny tunes comprised the medley you played? I am going to have to request them the next time I get to hear you play. . .

Mike - vocalist/percussionist - (via Facebook) - February 26, 2015

I picked up this CD over the weekend. Can’t stop listening to it. Most of you know...or, know of...Dick Gratton. He is legendary in the Trenton area, particularly in jazz circles. A self-taught artist who picked up his first guitar in 1948 (before most of us were even born) he plays strictly “by ear” which means he doesn’t rely on written notes to make music. It all comes from his head...his heart...and ten pretty amazing fingers. I’ve heard Dick play countless times, and have been honored to sing with him. But, after listening to this compilation, I feel like I just re-discovered him. Stunning! Thanks, Dick Gratton!

Linda - jazz vocalist - (via Facebook) - September 24, 2018

I just want to thank you publicly for your marvelous performances this weekend. I couldn't do what I do without you. Thank you for making it possible!

Kim - jazz vocalist - (via Facebook) - January 27, 2019


The Dinner Is Always Lovely But We Most Enjoy The Live Guitar Music (at Chambers Walk Cafe) - Chambers Walk is on our regular rotation of Friday/Saturday night dinner spots. The menu seems to change very little, but is always nice; however, the ambiance is what we really enjoy. The live guitar music during dinner is such a treat. The musician is quite skilled, plays popular and refined selections, and at just the right volume so quiet conversation can still take place.

luckyladyd - from TripAdvisor restaurant review site - November 17, 2012

Best Gem In Lawrenceville NJ (at Chambers Walk Cafe) - We had a perfectly prepared meal in a beautiful candlelight atmosphere with quiet lovely live guitar music.

vivilafrance - from OpenTable restaurant review site - February 21, 2014

Great food and music (at Chambers Walk Café) - The soothing guitar music by Dick Gratton turns a Fri/Sat nite into a perfect date night! Nothing in the area like it, so don't miss it.

Jfasch - from TripAdvisor restaurant review website - February 26, 2014

A Little Night's Music (at Chambers Walk Café) - We dined at Chambers Walk on Saturday evening and were pleasantly surprised to hear a jazz guitarist playing. He is an accomplished musician and his style was perfect for the café . . .

JudyW - from OpenTable restaurant review website - March 1, 2014

Anniversary (at Chambers Walk Cafe) - We had our anniversary date night and it was great. The food and the guitar player were great.

OpenTable Diner Since 2014 - from OpenTable restaurant review website - May 31, 2014

Great Food, Great Guitar Music (at Chambers Walk Cafe) - We love to eat here because the food is always fresh and delicious. The menu is not huge, but everything is delicious. The soups are a great start, the beef barley was hearty and so flavorful. The pasta was light and the fish so fresh and perfectly prepared. We enjoy a bottle of NJ wine and listening to the fabulous music by Dick Gratton. A perfect dinner date with my husband!

Jfasch - from TripAdvisor restaurant review website - January 13, 2015

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